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Parliamentary questions
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26 January 2021
Priority question for written answer  P-000468/2021
to the Commission
Rule 138
Liudas Mažylis (PPE)
 Answer in writing 
 Subject: Publication of EU contracts with vaccine manufacturers

In 2020, the Commission concluded contracts with pharmaceutical companies for the supply of vaccines against COVID-19, but this supply was disrupted in January 2021. Expectations of a smooth roll-out of vaccinations in the Member States and in the media have been replaced by resentment over supply disruptions. The vaccination campaign is incomparably better organised and widespread in the United Kingdom and Israel, where the same vaccines are being used. Parliament has debated these issues on numerous occasions. Public funds accounted for a significant proportion of investments in the development of vaccines, which required the publication of contracts between the Commission and pharmaceutical companies. So far, not all contracts or only parts of them have been made public. Information on pharmaceutical companies' contracts with third parties is not available.

1. Is the confidentiality of business (in this case pharmaceutical) transactions and the right to make a profit without disclosing it a higher priority than the health and lives of EU citizens? Will the Commission make public all the details of transactions relating to COVID-19 vaccines, and if so, when?

2. Does the Commission plan to require an option to disclose transactions with third parties in advance in future contracts?

3. What principles (for-profit or otherwise) will the EU4Health programme be based on – will it follow this flawed precedent for the purchase of COVID-19 vaccines, or will other principles will be introduced for the health and well-being of EU citizens under Article 168 TFEU (‘major cross-border health scourges’)?

Original language of question: LT
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